Adulthood. There’s so much that nobody warned me about. I’ve been an adult for almost sixteen (okay, sixteen plus ten) years and I’m still being slapped in the face every single day with the exasperating realities of adulthood. We all may not agree on everything, but I think we can all agree that being an adult is super stressful.
I’m not sure when it happened, but at some point, even the simplest of tasks became stressful. Heck, you can’t even swipe your debit card at the grocery store without being asked a thousand questions. “Did you find everything you needed?” Yes. “Is $138.46 okay?” Yes. “Do you want cash back?” No. “Do you want to give a dollar to help the less fortunate?” “NO! I just want you to take my money so I can leave already!” Why can’t anything be simple anymore?
I’ll be the first to admit that some of my stress comes from my own competitive nature. It’s difficult not to be stressed out all the time when you see everything in life as a competition. For example, if you and I pull up to the pharmacy or the bank drive thru at the same time, whether you know it or not, we are in a competition. In my mind, the person whose wheels move first wins. For a natural competitor like me, every activity is a contest, but that also means everyday is full of stress.
I’d love to be able to sit down with VIPSEEN readers and hear what crazy things in life stress you out, but let’s be honest; this is not an interactive publication. So, I decided to count down my list of top 10 stressors.
#10. Store security. I’ve never stolen a thing in my life, but when I make eye contact with a store security guard, I start to sweat and feel somewhat like a criminal.
#9. Awkward moments. When someone randomly breaks into song in public, when I respond to a person who is actually talking into their Bluetooth, saying goodbye to someone only to realize you’re both walking the same direction, or waving to someone and realizing they weren’t actually waving at you – these are all examples of awkward moments that stress me out. I’m way to immature to handle awkward moments graciously, so I tend to break into uncontrollable laughter.
#8. Thank you notes. I’m a huge procrastinator, so thank you notes hang like a ball and chain around my leg. My mother instilled in me the importance of writing them, it’s just that the procrastinator in me makes thank you notes a major source of stress. Can we just start texting “TY” instead of having to actually use paper and a postage stamp?
#7. Going to the dentist. I always feel like a huge failure when I go to the dentist, because they always point out something I could have done better. I didn’t floss enough. I should brush longer. I need a crown (as if I didn’t already know that). A trip to the dentist is a stress-filled semi annual reminder of all my shortcomings.
#6. When someone asks me what I am doing this weekend. Why do they want to know? Are they going to ask me to do something I don’t want to do? Something like helping them move or babysitting their demon kids for the weekend? Open-ended questions totally stress me out.
#5. Ordering online. What size? Will it fit? What if I have to return it? I’ll never return it, because returning is way too much trouble. Too much pressure, so it’s best just to suck it up and head to the store to shop.
#4. Talking to techie people on the phone. I don’t understand their lingo and I’m afraid they’ll realize I’m an idiot when it comes to anything that plugs into the wall or operates via the interwebs.
#3. Sick people spreading germs. There’s a good reason I’m not a nurse. Germs freak me out. So, if you have a cold, please do not touch me or enter my personal space. If you have pink eye, please stay home until you no longer have it. Pink eye is terrifying and the thought of actually contracting it stresses me out to no end.
#2. Helping kids with homework. Want to know what people in hell are doing right now? Helping kids work Common Core math problems.
#1. High expectations. Life is hard enough without everyone expecting greatness of us everyday. Some days I amaze myself, other days I walk around with toilet paper stuck to my shoe.
We’re all only human. So, the best advice I have for you is this: Keep your spirits high and you expectations low, so you’ll always be happy and everything above mediocrity will be seen as a blessing.